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Light and Creamy No-Bake Cheesecake

Can you have a good cheesecake with very little sugar and no eggs? Can it be smooth and creamy, and melt in your mouth? And before you have time to think, you’ve already reached for your next bite? Why, yes and yes! Say hello to our family’s lifelong addiction: the no-bake cheesecake. This is also perfect for those who don’t like the heaviness of regular cheesecake.
Servings: 8

Ingredients

For the Crust

  • 1.5 cup Graham cracker crumbs
  • 2 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1 tbsp lemon zest
  • 5 tbsp unsalted butter, melted

For the Filling

  • 1 pkg Gelatine powder (Knox brand) 7 grams
  • 1/2 cup water, divided
  • 2 bars 8-oz cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup Greek yogurt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

For Topping

  • Use any topping you wish. I used canned blueberry pie filling here, but you can easily make a compote of fruits in season.

Instructions

  • Line the bottom of an 8-inch springform pan with aluminum foil. You can use just one sheet of foil to cover the entire pan, just make sure the raised sides go up to at least 1.5 inches.
  • Combine graham cracker crumbs *, sugar, and lemon zest in a small bowl. Add butter and mix until all the crumbs are moistened and a thick, crumbly paste forms. Pour graham crumb paste onto the lined springform pan. Level and press to the bottom of the pan using a rubber spatula and neatly taper at the edge. Cover the pan with plastic wrap and place in the freezer for 15 minutes.
  •  Mix gelatin crystals and 1/4 cup water in a small bowl and allow to bloom for 5 minutes. Heat the other 1/4 cup water for 30 seconds in the microwave on high and pour into the gelatin bloom. Stir to dissolve, and allow to cool.
  • Place cream cheese, granulated sugar and lemon juice in a large bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment (you can use a hand mixer as well). Mix on low to break down the cream cheese for 30 seconds, and increase to medium speed for another 1 minute. Scrape the sides of the bowl and add sour cream, whipping cream, Greek yogurt and vanilla extract. Mix on medium for 30 seconds, scrape the sides, and then up the speed to medium-high for 2 minutes, until smooth and fluffy.
  • Starting on low speed again, pour gelatin into the cream cheese mixture. Then bump up to medium speed for a minute, scraping the sides of the bowl after 30 seconds.
  • Pour into the springform pan with crust and level with a spatula. Tap pan lightly against the counter to get rid of air bubbles. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 3 hours, preferably overnight.
  • Unhinge the springform pan and remove it from the cake. Carefully slide off the cake, still on the foil, onto a serving plate. You can tear out the sides of the aluminum foil or carefully slide it side to side to unstick it from the crust, and remove. To smooth the sides of the cake, slide the smooth edge of a table knife around it to create a smooth even surface. Pour your topping/s of choice before serving. It gets even better after 2 or 3 days!
  • Store in the fridge, wrapped in plastic wrap to prevent the exposed areas from drying out.

Notes

Regarding brands: You can use any brand you prefer, but I have not tried them with this recipe. Knox is the only gelatin my family has used for cheesecakes since I was a child because it just works beautifully with this recipe. I’ve always stood by Fage brand Greek Yogurt as a cooking/baking yogurt, and so far I have not found a better substitute for it. (We are not affiliated with either brand.)
This cheesecake will be nice and sturdy and will hold its shape for travel the next day (in case you are bringing it to a party). However, if you want the cheesecake sturdy fast (in 2 hours or less, by putting it in the freezer for 30 minutes or by putting it in the fridge for an hour), decrease the sour cream and yogurt by 1/4 cup each. Please remember that if you make the cheesecake this way, you need to consume it the same day or it will look and feel almost rubbery the next day. This is just the quick method in case you are in a hurry. The long method is ideal in texture and taste.
* There’s no need to buy graham cracker crumbs. Just put them in the food processor and pulse.